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TRAVEL TO QUEEN’S FUNERAL: TfL preparing for ‘unprecedented’ travel demand

As the nation continues to mourn the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Transport for London (TfL) is prepared for unprecedented travel demand in the capital tomorrow, on the day of Her Majesty’s State Funeral.

TfL is aiming to deliver its well-developed plan to keep the city moving and support those travelling to and from the Lying-in-State to ensure everyone can travel safely. TfL is asking customers to check before they travel, plan their journeys and regularly check live status updates. They should also allow more time for journeys and follow the instructions of TfL staff, event stewards and the police.

Tomorrow’s State Funeral is set to be one of the biggest events the capital has ever witnessed. Those travelling to central London for Her Majesty’s State Funeral are advised to plan their journeys using the travel app TfL Go or the TfL Journey Planner to ensure they have the latest travel information. Once they are in London, they should continue to check TfL’s real-time tools, such as TfL Go, to be aware of any delays and changes on the day, such as short-notice, temporary Tube and rail station closures due to the unprecedented demand.

TfL data has shown large increases in the numbers of people walking across London’s bridges, as people make their way around central London. The number of people crossing Blackfriars Bridge is up 50 per cent, while the number of people crossing Tower Bridge is up 67 per cent from the same time two weeks ago. On Friday (16 September) TfL saw 3.02m Tube journeys across London – up nine per cent compared to last Friday and concentrated in central London, and around 72 per cent of pre-pandemic levels. On buses there were 5.33m journeys across London – up five per cent compared to last week and around 83 per cent of pre-pandemic levels.

Transport providers have implemented well-developed plans with extra staff and services to help people get to where they need to be. These plans will remain in place following the State Funeral, to ensure that everyone who has travelled to London to pay their respects can travel home safely. Some road closures and bus diversions are in place and additional closures will be in place as Her Majesty’s coffin travels from London to Windsor across central, west and southwest London. Some road closures and diversions will continue until after Monday 19 September as event infrastructure is removed. This is expected to take several days, so customers should continue to check before they travel as it will take some time to return to normal.

Customers are advised that pay as you go with contactless or Oyster is the easiest way to pay across the whole transport network, and with daily capping, they will always pay less than a Day Travelcard. Customers using pay as you go also benefit from the Hopper fare, which allows unlimited bus and tram journeys within one hour of their first journey.

Andy Byford, London's Transport Commissioner, said: “We are continuing with preparations for tomorrow’s State Funeral so that Londoners and visitors can safely pay their respects to Her Majesty The Queen and travel around the city. We’re doing everything we can, working extremely closely with our partners to help keep London moving and I urge all our customers to check before they travel and before making their return journey, using the TfL website or TfL Go app.

“It is going to be extremely busy in London tomorrow and there may be short notice changes and queues to enter stations due to the large number of people travelling. We will be running a safe, reliable and frequent service to help ensure that everyone can travel home safely after paying their respects. We encourage everyone to consider making use of the wide range of facilities open across London for refreshments after the State Funeral. As well as allowing time to continue to pay respects, this will help ensure smoother journeys home for everybody."

London Underground will run a normal weekday service but finishing later; however, some stations will be busier than usual, and some short-term safety measures such as queuing, closures, non-stopping trains or changes to the way customers enter or exit a station may be necessary. Disabled customers can approach staff so that they may avoid queuing to enter the station. Westminster, St James's Park and Hyde Park Corner stations will be closed for most of Monday morning. TfL will aim to reopen stations to help customers leaving the Westminster area following the end of the funeral service, while Green Park station will be exit only from 10:00, starting to re-open fully from 20:00. The Tube will operate for an additional hour on Monday evening to help support customers leaving central London with services leaving central London at around 01:00. On Sunday and Monday the Elizabeth line will run a service with a train every five minutes on the central section (Paddington-Abbey Wood). Tonight, Elizabeth line services will run an hourly service overnight between Paddington and Reading, and between Liverpool Street and Shenfield, but not in the central section between Paddington and Abbey Wood. On Monday, Elizabeth line services will operate until around midnight between Paddington and Abbey Wood, while there will an hourly overnight service between Paddington and Reading.

TfL will be inviting customers to take part in tonight’s National Moment of Reflection, marked by observing a one-minute silence at 20:00. A further national two-minute silence will take place tomorrow at around 11.55. Buses will pull over if it is safe and practical to do so and will switch their engines off.

Services across London Underground, London Overground, DLR, London Trams and the Elizabeth line will also take part. Announcements to customers will be made just before the minute silence and services will continue to run. Taxis and private hire drivers and passengers are also invited to observe the minute silence.


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